Global Navigation Satellite Systems - GNSS have been accompanying us in civil aviation for over 20 years and they fundamentally changed the methods of navigation. Based on decisions of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the European Aviation Safety Agency, progressive legislative procedures for the use of GNSS in civil aviation are being issued. There were different approaches in the past from the side of FAA and EASA, but they are currently being gradually unified. Numerous new nomenclature and abbreviations are used in this area, which had to be properly defined and clearly explained. To date, only IFR flights of airliners have been regulated in the area of GNSS use. New regulations are now in place for the general aviation as well. In 2008, ICAO decided, based on a different approach by individual Member States, to issue a new PBN manual (9613) on performance-based navigation, which is currently being implemented by the European Aviation Safety Agency for the Member States of the European Union. Implementation of PBN will allow a more flexible use of airspace, including the publication of procedures for airports that were not yet equipped with the necessary equipment for instrument approach to landing. This is of course related also to the additional equipment of aircrafts and flight simulators. In this area, procedures and syllabi for additional pilot training for PBN in training organizations are defined through EASA Guidelines.
The change which is most relevant to pilots is Performance Based Navigation (PBN) concept, which aims to change diametrically point of view on navigation. The PBN is a logical next step for describing the navigation in order to allow firstly for greater airspace capacity and flexibility, and secondly for multiple navigation sensors and systems to be utilised.
The pilot flying IFR (Instrument Flight Rules) nowadays is expected that he came across with GNSS usage. This is mainly because navigation specification RNAV 5 is mandatory above FL095 at almost whole European airspace. The Todays knowledge for IFR flying is insufficient to be able to fly safely and trouble free in PBN environment. As EASAs new regulation (EU 2016/539) is resolving this issue with requiring PBN clause to Instrument Rating, it will be in effect from 25. August 2018.
IFR course is providing an explanation of Learning Objectives identified by the CaBilAvi (Capacity Building for Aviation stakeholders) project consortium, as relevant and important for PBN flying and missing in required theoretical knowledge of Pilots. The proposed Learning Objectives are intended to every Instrument Rated pilot and beyond.
The reason for making this VFR course is the proposal of new training syllabi, both theoretical and practical, that will require pilots to have a more advanced knowledge of these systems. This is a legitimate step, as the GNSS receivers have found their way into a vast majority of general aviation cockpits during the past decade. While these receivers can be beneficial in many ways, pilots must always keep in mind, that these devices have their limitations. So, fly safe and remember: GNSS is a good servant but a bad master.
This course is structured in accordance with the proposed changes and additions to the PPL(A), PPL(H) and LAPL theoretical knowledge syllabi, namely AMC1 to FCL.210 AND FCL.215. It takes every proposed item, which is to be added into the syllabus, and provides basic explanatory information to it, while it aims to be brief, clear and straight to the point.